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Friday, November 25, 2016

Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them (spoiler alert)

Yes, we are Harry Potter fans.  How did you guess?

So of course we had to see Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them.

There are two sources for the material in the movie.

Back in 2001, J.K. Rowling wrote a short book which purported to be a textbook used at Hogwarts, a book by magizoologist Newt Scamander about the magical creatures he observed throughout the world. Rowling also included a short bio of Scamander.

In Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows, Rowling explored considerable backstory involving Albus Dumbledore and a Dark Wizard, Gellert Grindelwald.  Grindelwald possessed the Elder Wand before Dumbledore won it from him.  Most of Grindelwald's story was left out of the Deathly Hallows movies.

So Fantastic Beasts begins with newspaper articles about Grindelwald and his escape from Europe, then quickly shifts attention to Newt Scamander's arrival in Prohibition-era NYC. Grindelwald does not make another appearance until the very end of the movie.  Instead, we follow Newt's misadventures as his magical creatures escape from his suitcase and wreak havoc on the city.

Some of my favorite moments include: that the Magical Congress is headquartered in the Woolworth Building; Newt's "mating dance"; what a cute couple Jacob and Queenie are; and Newt hunting for his creatures in Macy's.

The tie-in to Grindelwald is revealed in a Johnny Depp cameo at the end of the movie.

A fun movie, definitely worth seeing.

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